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A critical aspect of doing business is keeping information, inventory, and people safe at the business location, which is often referred to as loss prevention or asset protection. Commercial security refers to the method or service by which a business or commercial property protects against theft, fire, damage, or destruction. Some of the most common forms of commercial security include locks, iron bars, alarm systems, computer security software, security personnel, and video monitoring.
The simplest and often least costly of commercial security techniques is the installation of lock systems and window and door iron bars to physically secure all entrances from intruders. Physical locks and bars can be installed on any type of cabinet, desk, door, window, office, vehicle or other components of commercial property to keep things safe and away from thieves. The commercial security locks can be used alone or with bars and can involve a key system, a combination-code locking device, or an electronic lock that is remotely controlled from any area of the building.
Another common form of commercial security is the business alarm system. From simple window and door alarms to more elaborate electronic, remote-enabled alarm systems, business alarms are used to alert the authorities when a crime or emergency occurs. Generally, the alarm is triggered by a device that sets off a high-pitched sound and is remotely connected to an outside telephone line that calls the police or fire department when the incident occurs.
In the high-tech world, Internet information crime has become a concern of many commercial establishments, leading to the creation of commercial security software to protect the data stored on servers and computers. Computer security software can include Internet virus protection, firewalls, information theft, backups, and email encryption that makes it difficult for information thieves to obtain and illegally use data sent over the Internet. In addition, many companies use commercial security firms to monitor server activities around the clock.
Along with physical security devices such as locks, bars and alarms, an organization may choose to install a video monitoring system to create a recorded record of all activities that occur at the establishment. This can be viewed live by employees to reduce the chance of theft or crime, so authorities can be alerted when suspected criminal or hazardous activity is in process. In addition, video systems include a permanent method for recording the activities that can be used in court to prove a crime or hazard has occurred and is very helpful to catch thieves and accidents on tape for further action, which protects the commercial property and owners.
For some commercial establishments, the use of online security personnel is the preferred way to maintain security and safety of assets, property, employees, and customers. Security guards are hired directly or through a commercial security firm and are assigned shifts to monitor the establishment, including any video or alarm systems, throughout the day and evening. Commercial security guards may be armed or unarmed and the level of security may vary depending on the needs of the organization.